New Commissioner Chosen for NYC Emergency Management

"I'm ready to get to work as commissioner for NYC Emergency Management in the greatest city in the world," Deanne B. Criswell said. "Thanks to Mayor de Blasio for the opportunity to bring my 25 years of experience to plan for, respond to, and protect 8.6 million New Yorkers when the city faces a crisis."

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced June 4 that Deanne B. Criswell will serve as commissioner of the New York City Emergency Management Department. Criswell is the first woman to lead that department in the city's history.

"NYC Emergency Management is at the forefront of our city’s response to threats and disasters, and they must be prepared for anything that might come our way," said de Blasio, calling her "a trailblazer with the experience, passion, and skill necessary to prepare us for the unexpected."

Criswell previously headed the emergency management practice for the Cadmus Group LLC. She had served as the leader of one of the Federal Emergency Management Agency's National Incident Management Assistance Teams and as a federal coordinating officer. In that role, she was the primary federal representative responsible for leading the agency's response to and recovery from emergencies and major disasters. She also served as the head of the Office of Emergency Management for the city of Aurora, Colo.; as a member of the Colorado Air National Guard, Criswell served 21 years as a firefighter and deputy fire chief.

"I'm ready to get to work as commissioner for NYC Emergency Management in the greatest city in the world," she said. "Thanks to Mayor de Blasio for the opportunity to bring my 25 years of experience to plan for, respond to, and protect 8.6 million New Yorkers when the city faces a crisis."

Craig Fugate, former administrator of FEMA, said of Criswell, "She has briefed presidents, governors, and mayors. As a former first responder, she has worked at all levels of disasters with a focus on survivors, first responders, and the communities impacted. I am very confident in her abilities to lead and coordinate NYC's emergency management team."

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